Playdates with God: Keeping Warm

It’s cold here, friends. Cold. And snow is blowing about like so much powdered sugar. I have two growing boys upstairs sleeping–home from school again. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the time we have left with them. I thought I’d plan a special breakfast. Maybe surprise them a bit. So I’ve pulled an old post from the archives today, hope you don’t mind. I’m going to have a little playdate right now. Love.


Last night after dinner the electricity went off. A white sky illuminated the night outside, silhouetting our usual and I stared at my laptop in the dark…no internet connection… the screen an island of light in the room. Our two boys clamored—wound up by darkness and excitement pulsed as their daddy lit candles and checked the weather on his iPhone.
We sat in the hush and listened to the wind blow the deck furniture around. It was late—after ten—so I tucked protesting boys in with a candle gently flickering—thinking of Little House on the Prairie and savoring the play of the warm glow on their still young faces. 
I returned to the couch in the dark.
We sat in silence, he and I; listened to driving rain turn to gentle patter, watched the play of lightning on hills in the distance. For once, no hum of air conditioner, no mindless buzz of refrigerator, dishwasher was silent. All of our daily companions closed their eyes in this dark.
There was only the soft ticking of the mantle clock keeping time with faint strumming of droplets colliding with window, only to slide down and lose form in a streaky stream.
We giggled a little at our loss, wondered how did they do it? with no electricity…only talk to spend.  We marveled at work-filled days and talk-filled evenings and fell in to silence.
I closed my eyes in the dark and felt God sitting beside.
Silence feels good to me. I find it by sitting still. By looking deeper into what is already here.
Always a solitary child, that’s me. I can fall into His arms in the quiet and never desire to leave. All my life this is where I have rested. Safe from jabbing words of others; hidden from wound-talk.
I know it’s not that way for everyone. And lately, besieged by life and fraught with hope, I’ve been wondering, Is there another way?
God is always the same, yes, this I know. But I have also come to learn that He loves to mix things up. He understands the human tendency to grow stale when patterns are established. He loves surprises. He likes to keep our love fresh and new. This year has been a crazy mixed up year for finding God for me. My years of early morning quiet time suddenly ceased to feel intimate. For the first time in years I found myself falling asleep with my cheek pressed to the dining room floor at 5 a.m.
It was time for something new.
I find God when I run. I feel Him in my legs, in my breath, in the acceleration of my beating heart. He meets me in the sky and the trees and the way the light changes colors on the horizon.
This morning when I ran, the storm was still fresh on the sidewalk. Fallen branches and stray leaves littered the street. The creek was rushing its banks and the smell of muddy water rose dense into the air around me. A handful of black crows perched on the utility wires above me, caw, caw, caw
As my feet pounded the pavement, I remembered a poem a dear friend sent me. In it, she tells me that I am birdsong, and those words have lifted me on the darkest of days. My heart soars as I imagine music in my stride. And as I go on, I am lifted into its melody.
I fly away
flutter my
through misty
in the sky;
dip fingertips
in morning dew-
cups, silky
petals collect
evening honey,
and offer this
sweet frieze to
me in golden
shimmer of
dawn. I am
free. I am…
I grow when I look for Him in the not usual way. He loves for me to seek after Him in wild and beautiful ways. Writing poetry doesn’t seem so crazy a way to pray. Nor does running.
He’s there. He’s in it all.
How do you embrace the God-joy? Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. Grab my button at the bottom of the page and join us: 
 The Playdates button:


  1. says

    Laura – This softness and quiet – though written months ago – reflects so beautifully what is going on outside in our world. We can’t go out in it – we’d be frostbit within 10 minutes – but inside we work and wait and hope in quiet. It’s really quite lovely.

    As are you and these words.

  2. Nancy Sturm says

    Oh, Laura, I can relate to this post. Sitting still and listening to His voice, walking the nature trails, seeing his hand at work, standing by the ocean’s edge, hearing His heartbeat in the rhythm of the waves, climbing a mountain peak, seeing the work of His hands–these are all ways I love to connect with God. Thank you for reposting. And I hope your boys loved your special morning playdate!

  3. JViola79 says

    I am so glad that you shared this as I do not think I ever read this post. I, too, often find myself trying to keep “safe from jabbing words, hidden from wound-talk”. I also found myself praying that God would muzzle me at those times that I would release words which would have that affect on someone else. May we be still before Him & His Words, knowing that they are always the balm we need. Thank you so much for taking the playdate & pulling out an old post 🙂

  4. says

    Yes..yes…drink in these spontaneous moments…and I too maybe feel the most close to God when I run…there is the saying “pens have eyes”. Well what would be a good saying for running…legs and lungs ???? Maybe bring life…both spiritually and physically ….enjoy your day!!!!

  5. Diane | says

    I love reading your words, Laura. 🙂
    You know…God really does keep this fresh and new. Sometimes we just have a different idea of what fresh and new should look like. [wink]

    Wishing you a blessed New Year!

  6. says

    Ha! Yes, this is so true, Diane. My vision is limited by this skin I wear. These things I do–these playdates–they simply help me see what is already there. XOXO

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  7. says

    Now you have me thinking! Maybe “feet have eyes”? Because running helps me see the way writing does. Interesting line of thought :). I’ll have to ponder. Hugs to you, lady.

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  8. says

    I’m so glad these words spoke to you this morning, friend. Sometimes, I have to “run out” that kind of thinking. Somehow, the exercise also exorcises :). And, yes, I’ve prayed that same prayer also–that no harm will come from my words. Pray you are keeping warm where you are! Much love.

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  9. says

    And your words have filled my heart this morning, Nancy! Shame it’s so cold outside because you have me longing for an outdoor adventure :). I hope it is warmer where you are and you are able to enjoy God through His creation today.

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  10. says

    We had butter-brushed biscuits with bacon and sausage and a yogart smoothie with banana, strawberry, and honey. Filled me in more ways than one 🙂 Love you, M.

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  11. says

    Well, the electricity did go off last night, Charity, but I didn’t go running this morning! I bit wimpy about cold and am perfectly happy to stay inside and do the elliptical on days like these. Well, maybe not perfectly, but it beats the alternative. 🙂 Supposed to be the same tomorrow. Stay warm, my friend!

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  12. soulstops says

    Happy to know you are enjoying time with your boys….thanks for sharing your thoughts and yes, God does like to keep surprising us…yes, you are “birdsong” …much love & hugs to you 🙂

  13. says

    I’m so glad you re-posted this. (and, that you grabbed hold of precious time with those growing boys of yours) I missed this the first time around, and I’m glad I got to hear the whisper of your hush.

  14. says

    So glad you’re seizing the day; yes, time with our kids goes so fast. Hope you enjoyed a special breakfast this morning.

    This is always good for me to be reminded of: “I grow when I look for Him in the not usual way.” I can happily sit in my ruts, and while God is there too, he likes to get out and play as well.

  15. says

    Oh Laura, grab these special moments because you know they will soon be gone. This Mom knows that all too well!
    But on another of your thoughts in the previous post, I love the way God knows when we need things mixed up a little so we don’t feel stale. I’m flying high today because I was called to sub at my old school. Even though hubby and I are retired, I really miss my friends there and the routine of that every day. God is so good to give me a few days “to mix things up.” I’m glad he’s in control.

  16. says

    My kids have a two hour delay from school tomorrow and you would think they won the lottery, they’re are so excited to sleep in. Hope your morning was sweet and you’re staying warm. The weather is so wacky isn’t it?


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